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Hermann von Helmholtz, polymath, b.1821

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Hermann Ludwig Ferdinand von Helmholtz (31 August 1821 – 8 September 1894) was a German physicist and physician who made significant contributions in several scientific fields. The largest German association of research institutions, the Helmholtz Association, is named after him.

In physiology and psychology, he is known for his mathematics of the eyetheories of vision, ideas on the visual perception of space, color vision research, and on the sensation of tone, perception of sound, and empiricism in the physiology of perception.

In physics, he is known for his theories on the conservation of energy, work in electrodynamicschemical thermodynamics, and on a mechanical foundation of thermodynamics.

As a philosopher, he is known for his philosophy of science, ideas on the relation between the laws of perception and the laws of nature, the science of aesthetics, and ideas on the civilizing power of science.

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